Fruitvale Elementary School kids go cross-country skiing

Kids at Fruitvale Elementary School hit the trails instead of the slopes and learned about a different kind of skiing.
Published: Mar. 20, 2023 at 9:33 PM MDT
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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KJCT) - A group of kids at Fruitvale Elementary School had the opportunity to head up to Grand Mesa to go Cross Country skiing. For most of them, it was their first time. The adventure was made possible by Riverside Educational Center.

Riverside Educational Center is a non-profit organization that helps get kids in low-income schools in grades K-12 to experience afterschool activities. “It could be taking them to CMU just to tour the university. We also will take them to the theater there. We’ll take them to sporting events; we’ve gone to some of the hockey games, basketball, baseball, and the Colorado National Monument,” said Hannah Pittman, Enrichment Director for Riverside Educational Center.

Friday started with lunches and an instructor teaching kids the basics of cross-country skiing. They also practiced getting up correctly in case they fell along the route. Afterward, they were cross-country skiing along loop one at the County Line Ski Trailhead.

Riverside Educational Center receives most of its funds through 21st Century Bank, which makes it a possibility to take kids out on different adventures and travel throughout the state.

Trips usually happen during afterschool hours and breaks. It makes it easier for the kids to experience the adventure and have the time to do so. “Those are the days we try to take field trips, because then there’s more time to go out and about because two hours in a day doesn’t give us enough time. We also do some spring break trips, depending on like who’s around and who wants to do them during breaks. We’ve done that and then we have a summer program in June,” said Alex Herrera, Fruitvale Elementary Programming Manager.

Kids who go on trips with Riverside Educational Center can experience the outdoors and go to places that otherwise would have been too expensive for them to afford.